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Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Debra Kaye, Ikarus Among the Stars, New Modern Works of Note

Living, breathing composer Debra Kaye has happily come to the attention of this blog with a few releases that nicely included her music (type her name in the search box above to access those articles). Now we hear a full CD devoted to her compositions, and a good thing that very much is. Ikarus Among the Stars (Navona NV 6521) brings together some six compositions from select chamber works through to a significant finale, the title work, commissioned by the Portland Youth Symphony Orchestra, filled with a most interesting fusionoid melding of Modern Orchestral and Contemporary Pop, Hip-Hop, and Prog Rock stylings that fascinate and move the needle forward on what can be done and done well in the Modern spheres. Sometimes I catch myself going to say, well this is tonal, but then I realize in the Modernity of today Atonality and/or Serialist ways are pretty much relegated to past masters, the no-longer active cadre of composers of yesterday and the day before yesterday. Of course that is not to say that noise and sound color options are not important these days in the avant garde, and good for that if done well.

To keep on the main point though this album affirms Ms. Kaye's stature as a singular voice for today's Modern scene. Each work gives us a world of its own, from 'The Exchange" and its brittle clarion voicings for clarinet and cello, to the serious, probingly inventive demeanor of the First String Quartet,  "Encountering Lorca."

Each work is a gem and together we find upon multiple listens a compelling argument for Debra Kaye as a key "new" voice in American music today. This music will give you a nice introduction to her music if you do not already know it. Bravo.

See this link to find out where to stream the album:

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